In 1953 Garrincha was a 19 year-old man who signed for Rio’s top club of Botafogo FR. In his first training session Garrincha put the ball between the legs of experience national team defender Nilton Santos.
Mané Garrincha soon became the most loved and the most hated player in Brazil. Botafogo supporters and fans of his entertaining antics loved him; his rivals hated him. However, he was not called up to play in the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland. After the tragedy of Maracanã four years earlier all that Brazilians could hope for was for some entertainment but coach Zezé Moreira didn’t think so.
The 1954 team was good but maybe it was missing some magic, a sparkle upfront, Garrincha, maybe. The dream of making up for 1950 ended in a sound 4-2 defeat to the amazing Hungary of Ferenc Puskas.
In 1958 and 1962 Garrincha was a much more mature player on the field and carved his name in the history of the sport winning the World Cup back to back. Mainly in 62 when Pelé was sidelined for most of the tournament due to an injury. Garrincha is regarded by FIFA as the second best Brazilian footballer ever.
Now back to 2010. History seems to repeat itself.
Dunga refused to call up Neymar when the whole country was asking for the kid to be in the squad that went to South Africa.
Brazil made an early exit in the World Cup, Dunga resigned and now new manager Mano Menezes gives the people what the people want: entertainment. Neymar.
It’s obviously too early to make statements about Neymar’s future with the Seleção but it’s almost impossible not to make comparisons.
Garrincha was also, at times, called irresponsible. Someone who would put the spectacle before efficiency showing a certain level of disdain for his opponents but very few could resist having a smile on their faces when defenders were being treated like fools by the king of dribbling.
That’s Neymar. That’s the beauty of the genuine Brazilian Football. Whether you like it or not that’s another story.
Brazil vs. USA
Neymar will be just one of the new faces on the Brazilian squad that will face the USA in a friendly match. Victor, Rafael, Rever, Jucilei, Paulo Henrique Ganso, André are just some of the new faces on the renovation that Mano Menezes is starting up in the national squad.
The match against the United States will happen on Tuesday, August 10 at Meadowlands Stadium in New Jersey. I’m sure the huge Brazilian community in NJ will be present at the stadium and the players will respond to the warmth of the supporters.
The best thing about this match is that there’s no pressure. It’s only the beginning of Menezes’ work and everybody knows that. The fans will support, the players can feel free and comfortable enough to play with no commitment.
Any result would be acceptable and understandable at this point so it’s the perfect time to go out there and try to entertain. Try to give to the people what the people want. Do I think Brazil is going to lose to the USA? Absolutely not. But it’s not just about winning the match. It’s about bringing back the true Brazilian Football. It’s show time.
Brazil 4-1 USA
Ganso, André, Neymar and Robinho will be just too much for the USA defense to handle.